June 07, 2016

Rep. Barbara Lee: Doubling Down on Failed Austerity Cuts Isn’t A “Better Way”

46 Million Americans Living in Poverty Can’t Afford House Republicans “Wrong Way” On Poverty

Washington, DC - Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement in response to Speaker Ryan’s so-called “Better Way” agenda on poverty, which would increase poverty and cut vital programs:

“Right now there are more than 46 million Americans living in poverty, including 16 million children. Congress has failed to address this epidemic for far too long.

“For years, House Democrats have asked Congressional Republicans to join us in developing a serious plan to address this crisis. Instead, they’ve chosen to double down on the same bad policies that have kept families trapped in poverty for generations.

“Let’s be clear - we won’t solve the epidemic of poverty by preventing families from getting ahead. Quite simply, cutting food assistance, affordable housing and job training programs will create more poverty. With more than half of Americans expected to live in poverty or near-poverty during their working years, families can’t afford Speaker Ryan’s cuts.

“Instead of decimating our proven safety net programs, House Republicans need to get serious about the issues facing American families – including food insecurity, homelessness, underemployment, spiraling college costs and stagnant wages. Speaker Ryan’s empty words on poverty mean nothing if they’re not backed by legitimate proposals to address this crisis.”

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Congresswoman Lee is a member of the Appropriations and Budget Committees, the Steering and Policy Committee, is a Senior Democratic Whip, former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus and co-chair of the Progressive Caucus. She serves as chair of the Democrat Whip Task Force on Poverty, Income Inequality and Opportunity.